Workout clothes have become as much of a fashion statement these days as designer jeans, the latest purse or trendiest sandals. Although it’s great to have cute gym clothes and feel attractive when you go work out, its also important that your workout clothes serve their purpose: to help you get the most from your workout. Going to yoga in loose breezy layers may make you look boho fabulous, but you’re one tree pose away from tripping in a layer and not looking nearly Zen as you had hoped for. It is possible, however, to look cute and also be dressed to get the most out of your workout, if you keep some key elements in mind.
Everyone loves a soft t-shirt. Cozy and comfy, it’s the ultimate in casual wear. But wearing a super soft 100% cotton t-shirt to hot yoga is a big mistake. Moisture-wicking fabrics do just what they state, they pull the moisture away from your body and dry quickly. Your still going to drip with sweat in Bikram yoga, but instead of the sweat being trapped between your clothes and your skin, the sweat will be pulled to the outer layers of the fabric where it can dry quickly. This is an important feature useful not just for hot workouts. When working out in cold temperatures, it’s important to pull the sweat away from the skin as well, otherwise the body can cool down too quickly at the end of the workout.
There are very few workouts where loose and flowing is ever the right choice. For certain dance classes, a long skirt may be the right choice, but for most workouts fitted clothing is best. In yoga and pilates classes, the body needs to move freely, so clothes that fit close allow for that kind of movement and body positioning. That said, fitted does not mean skin-tight. Spandex pants that fit like a sausage skin can restrict movement as well. Tight waistbands that cut into your skin are not only unflattering, but can make it hard to breathe properly. Many companies now make pants with compression elements to them, which can be beneficial in circulation and also flatter the body. However even these pieces that are made to add compression need to fit properly. Concealing the body behind over-sized clothes also makes it hard to keep an eye on form, both when watching yourself in the mirror or in a group class. So do yourself and your instructor a favor and wear clothes that allow for good visibility of your body. Besides, regardless of your size, fitted is always more flattering than a potato sack.
Those adorable long sleeve t-shirts with the little thumb holes look adorable on everyone. Did you know there is a reason for the thumb-hole however? Its so the sleeve stays down. When running and swinging your arms, it helps to have those little hooks to keep your shirt in place, because nobody wants to constantly be adjusting their clothes during their workout.
With so many companies making workout clothes now, it’s easy to find cute workout clothes that fit into any budget. From Target to Lululemon, there are yoga pants at every price point. More expensive doesn’t always mean better. Fit and function are the key ingredients in your workout clothes, so don’t break the bank on your leggings. If you’re going to splurge, spend the money on a great sports bra. Proper support will ease pressure on your back, and help keep gravity from having too much say when you’re sprinting to the finish line.
With so many colors, cuts and styles to choose from these days, there is no reason to go to the gym in your boyfriend’s t-shirt and sweats, a cute pair of leggings await you no matter what.